Great Scot it's close

TARTAN yourselves up, because the best community event of the year is set to blow into action tomorrow afternoon.

After spending the past week praying for clear weather this Easter long weekend, organisers of the 107th Maclean Highland Gathering are pumped for two days of non-stop Scottish fun, and president of the Lower Clarence Scottish Association Bob MacPherson has just one message to announce: “Bring it on.”

“This event is a fantastic time for the people of Maclean and the surrounding area to celebrate their Scottish culture,” he said.

“Even people who were born in Maclean and are now living in other areas come back home for this event because there’s a great urge to be in Maclean at this time of year. When you grow up in Maclean, this event becomes a part of your life.

“Locals who are unable to make it home for the event always tell me how sad they are to miss it.

“The gathering has a lot of community spirit and if you’re like me, you’ll love coming and watching the pipers in action.”

The program for the 107th annual event consists of highland dancing, haggis hurling, log wrestles, men and ladies’ kilted dash, solo drumming, solo piping and band competitions.

More than 20 Scottish bands are coming to the event this year and over 600 competitors have entered the program, many for the first time.

Dance instructor Janet North-Gray, from Maclean Scottish Town Dancers, has a number of junior dancers competing at their first Highland Gathering and is confident her students will fling themselves into the dance steps.

“They’ve all been working hard and I think they’ll be very competitive,” she said.

“The gathering is a very special event for Maclean and it’s a great opportunity for highland dancers to show their talent.”

The 107th Maclean Highland Gathering will be held at the Maclean Showground tomorrow and Saturday.

Admission costs $15 for adults, $10 for pensioners and $5 for students.

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